1. IN THE DARK

    China Blacks Out Activist’s Escape

    Chinese paramilitary police officers patrol outside the U.S. Embassy in Beijing, China, Saturday, April 28, 2012. Chen Guangcheng, a blind legal activist who fled house arrest in his rural China village, is under the protection of U.S. officials and high-level talks are taking place between the countries about his fate, an overseas activist group said Saturday. (AP Photo/Alexander F. Yuan)

    Alexander F. Yuan / AP Photo

    As Chinese and American diplomats work to resolve a tense diplomatic situation Monday, censors inside the communist country are blocking news of Chen Guangcheng’s defiant escape after 18 months under house arrest. Keyword searches for information about Chen on Sina Weibo, a popular Chinese microblogging site, yield a message saying that the search has been denied due to “relevant laws and policies.” Officials have also blocked references to the 1994 film The Shawshank Redemption, because some Chinese saw similarities between the tale of prison inmates and Chen’s real-life drama.

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